Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner
21 - 35 of 35 Posts

·
Premium Member
Next Year: 8-Frame Mediums
Joined
·
428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Yes - the Miller Method involves cutting back to the appropriately-aged larvae. However, when using white comb the wax is so soft, the bees can easily cut it back themselves, or mold it how they want - unlike old, aged comb.
To be perfectly honest, this is something I've never given any thought to. Looking at that photograph with hindsight, the cells are so large (looking more like teats on a cow's udder), I'd say they had cut that comb back themselves and built q/cells on the resulting edge, just like swarm cells.
Yep - basically the same thing I guess. White comb means they can reshape as they see fit.

I'm going to have to go down to Australia/New Zealand to try all this because I can't wait till spring. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
BIBBA produces a series of booklets during the 1970s
I have a copy of "Raise your own queens by the punched cell method" (Richard Smailes British Isles Bee Breeders' Association 1977 ISBN 0 905369 10 6 ) ... I was trained as an instrument maker by the BBC, and have a good quality lathe in my workshop.
The book contains some good drawings and I also managed to lay my hands on a X 10 blueprint, which a previous owner had stapled in the back cover of the book.

I made a set of ten punches. and a few more that I handed out to some BIBBA members.
The brass 9.5mm tube was available but not from stock and pricey, I found that 9.5 ( used) hand gun shell cases were exactly the correct size.
I experimented with the perspex cup, difficult to machine, did not have the 3D printer technology at that time ( 10 + years ago?) Stock vinyl tube needs to be turned to a taper, although I suspect any bit of tube that gives the bees a grip would do

Tried the system with moderate success..... grafting from 3 day larvae so much easier if you get some of the cheap Chinese magnifying glasses on the market.

With any queen production system the colonies have to bee strong and prepped up to produce queens!
Good Luck
 

·
Premium Member
Next Year: 8-Frame Mediums
Joined
·
428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #23 ·
I have a copy of "Raise your own queens by the punched cell method" (Richard Smailes British Isles Bee Breeders' Association 1977 ISBN 0 905369 10 6 )
And here it is for the low-low price of $73. :)

There are a lot of books/pamphlets I hear about from BIBBA that appear to be lost in time. I'm a member because I feel it's only fair to help support since I use the information they put out. It would be awesome if they could use some of the print-on-demand technology available now to reprint some of those lost gems.

I experimented with the perspex cup, difficult to machine, did not have the 3D printer technology at that time ( 10 + years ago?)
I can't imagine what the first machinist thought when they saw a 3D printer whack out something that took them hours.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,322 Posts
"With any queen production system the colonies have to bee strong and prepped up to produce queens!" This snip from Little Brother's post is what you need to focus on learning. There are many different methods of collecting and presenting suitable larvae to the bees to make queens from but none of them will give good results without preparing the scene.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
And here it is for the low-low price of $73. :)

There are a lot of books/pamphlets I hear about from BIBBA that appear to be lost in time. I'm a member because I feel it's only fair to help support since I use the information they put out. It would be awesome if they could use some of the print-on-demand technology available now to reprint some of those lost gems.


I can't imagine what the first machinist thought when they saw a 3D printer whack out something that took them hours.
I had Roger stay over with us a few years ago... we copied up a few books and pamflets with the hope that BIBBA could reprint with updates... seems Roger has been busy as he has knocked out 2 more publications on bees of his own this year!

I bet as much time is used up writing the program to run the printer..... I went from manually setting up and making up tools and jigs.. to programming the IC machines.... skills that the noob generation are beginning to realise will earn them as much cash and respect as any of the wizzo kids working the money markets!!!
Cheers:)
 

·
Premium Member
Next Year: 8-Frame Mediums
Joined
·
428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I had Roger stay over with us a few years ago... we copied up a few books and pamflets with the hope that BIBBA could reprint with updates... seems Roger has been busy as he has knocked out 2 more publications on bees of his own this year!
I saw (have) the one on colony increase - what was the other one?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
I saw (have) the one on colony increase - what was the other one?
There was a complete series of the BIBBA leaflets..( British Isles Bee Breeders' Association) which has had a change of name latterly to remove the contentious nod to the British Isles!
Now the Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders Association, has the same goals as Beowolf Cooper set out when it was called the Village Bee Breeders Association, which had little to do with the Kinks song " Village Green Preservation Society, china cups or virginity!"
BIBBA leaflet series included No 12 Make your own Glass Quilt (1973) No 15 Mininucs(1974) No 16 Minicosies (1974) and my favorite Griff Jenkins , Queen Raising The Jenkins Way, which first published in 1984 has been the methodology I have followed to rear our own Native Cornish variant of Apis mellifera mellifera.
Some one will no doubt put the whole series on CD, but until that time I shall continue looking for these brilliant little books!
Cheers:)
 

·
Premium Member
Next Year: 8-Frame Mediums
Joined
·
428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Some one will no doubt put the whole series on CD, but until that time I shall continue looking for these brilliant little books!
As much as I am enamored of the electrons we sling around, I love real paper.

I wish I could help with getting some of those cleaned up for republication. It's sad to think some of these may never see the light of day again.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Little Brother

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
566 Posts
I tried the Nicot system first as my eyesight was going to make grafting difficult. After a few failed rounds I decided to buy a magnifying visor (Harbor Freight, probably $12-15). For a while I took a headband led and held it with my mouth while wearing the visor. It was a crazy look, but allowed both hands to be free and I could dial in the light where needed.

Finally landed on a music stand on my porch (can be adjusted to any height/angle) as I already owned it. Now I put the diffused sunlight over my shoulder and can set up and graft as many as I like in minutes.

The main obstacle? Intimidation. Once I accepted that a 25% success rate was more queens than I needed and I didn’t have to perfect things immediately, it was all downhill.

I think cell punching, or the pizza cutter method of waxing a small strip onto a top bar and emptying all but a few cells, are really cool ways to do it. That said, apart from seriously poor eyesight, if I can graft anyone can.
 

·
Premium Member
Next Year: 8-Frame Mediums
Joined
·
428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #30 ·
The main obstacle? Intimidation. Once I accepted that a 25% success rate was more queens than I needed and I didn’t have to perfect things immediately, it was all downhill.
Well, my main obstacle right now is that's it's late fall and I don't have any bees. :)

But this has been a good thing - I learned a little more, conversed a little more, drew some more lines between bits and pieces I have read and learned here and there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,322 Posts
I tried the Nicot system first as my eyesight was going to make grafting difficult. After a few failed rounds I decided to buy a magnifying visor (Harbor Freight, probably $12-15). For a while I took a headband led and held it with my mouth while wearing the visor. It was a crazy look, but allowed both hands to be free and I could dial in the light where needed.

Finally landed on a music stand on my porch (can be adjusted to any height/angle) as I already owned it. Now I put the diffused sunlight over my shoulder and can set up and graft as many as I like in minutes.

The main obstacle? Intimidation. Once I accepted that a 25% success rate was more queens than I needed and I didn’t have to perfect things immediately, it was all downhill.

I think cell punching, or the pizza cutter method of waxing a small strip onto a top bar and emptying all but a few cells, are really cool ways to do it. That said, apart from seriously poor eyesight, if I can graft anyone can.
Led Head Magnifying Glasses Lianshi Headset with Light Hands Free Magnifying for Eyelash Extension,Watch Repair,Jewelry,Crafts,1.0X/1.5X/2.0X/2.5X/3.5X : Amazon.ca: Health & Personal Care This is by far the best I have found for precision viewing. The light direction is very directional and the source not an obstruction. 5 different diopter lens sets that are moveable for fine tuning. Gives good binocular vision if your eyes are up to it. I have such discrepancy eye to eye, I functionally use only one for closeup work though. This item takes vision shortfalls out of the equation for grafting!
 

·
Premium Member
Next Year: 8-Frame Mediums
Joined
·
428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #32 ·
This is by far the best I have found for precision viewing.
I have that one actually - I use it for soldering up electronics where my eyes aren't what they used to be. I also bought a pair of "cheaters" to use in the bee yard when looking for eggs. It's helping me get the hang of things.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,322 Posts
I have that one actually - I use it for soldering up electronics where my eyes aren't what they used to be. I also bought a pair of "cheaters" to use in the bee yard when looking for eggs. It's helping me get the hang of things.
Good! Now you can no longer use the eyesight for an excuse not to graft!:geek:
 

·
Premium Member
Next Year: 8-Frame Mediums
Joined
·
428 Posts
Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Fine! I'll find a new excuse!
 
  • Haha
Reactions: crofter
21 - 35 of 35 Posts
Top